Senior Research Associate
Thomas Hanson conducts rigorous research on the effectiveness of programs, products, and practices intended to improve student outcomes.
Hanson serves as Senior Research Associate for the Health and Human Development Program and Co-Director of Research for the Regional Educational Laboratory West (REL West), both WestEd programs. He is the lead for the REL West Middle Grades School Climate Alliance.
Hanson directs the Lessons in Character and Tribes Outcome evaluations and serves as lead methodologist for several studies examining the impacts of education interventions. He also conducts evidence-based research for the California Healthy Kids Survey (CHKS), a comprehensive youth risk behavior and resilience data collection service available to all California local education agencies. In addition, Hanson is leading the efficacy studies in the final years of the Institute of Education Sciences' READi (Reading, Evidence, and Argumentation in Disciplinary Instruction) research initiative.
Hanson has co-written reports focused on topics such as health risks, resilience, the academic performance and school-related well-being in California schools, and school racial/ethnic composition and student risk behavior.
Hanson's work prior to joining WestEd centered on family and child well-being, health socialization, child support reform, poverty, and research methods.
In 2004, he received the Annual Award for Exceptional Contribution to the WestEd Community for strengthening the rigor of WestEd's research designs and methodologies and his embodiment of teamwork. In 2000, Hanson and his CHKS colleagues received the WestEd Paul D. Hood Award for Distinguished Contribution to the Profession.
Hanson received a BA in sociology from Old Dominion University and an MS and PhD in sociology from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.